Around Town – An Interview with Very Betty in Prosper
Walking into this lovely boutique, you’ll immediately feel welcomed. Every nook and cranny carries items that entice. From the beautiful clothing in the front, to the great bags and jewelry created by local designers that is perfectly showcased. You walk through and find the fragrance you’ve been enjoying in the form of bath salts, lotions and candles. Gifts that would make anyone gleam. Then comes housewares, with texture and style, and even gifts for men! It’s the quintessential one stop shop! I had the pleasure of interviewing Very Bettys’ owner Evelyn, and it was so great to get an inside look into what makes Very Betty so special!
And GUESS WHAT?? Today, (Tuesday 9/29) they are having an incredible 75% off sidewalk sale!! GO!! RUN!!! I promise you’ll fall in love and find so much to bring home with you. 😉
When did you become interested in fashion? And what inspired you to open Very Betty?
As long as I can remember I liked fashion and I was always willing to take fashion risks and be different. I had a shop in Dallas and I wanted to open a store where one was needed and where I could inspire people to look and feel great.
Take us through a day in your life as a fashion entrepreneur….
A retail store is a business that requires a lot of creativity and hard work. I spend most of my days thinking about how to mix fashion, with quality, uniqueness and value while trying to provide great customer service in a comfortable atmosphere. There is a lot planning, inventory, bookkeeping and marketing to keep up with as well.
The boutique is based in Prosper, TX. What are some of the fashion trends you’ve taken note of in this town?
I have noticed that women dress casually while running around town but want to look fashionable when they are at work and socializing.
What are your three favorite things in Very Betty right now?
I love our local jewelry designer. She makes beautiful and unique pieces that can be worn casually and dressy. We have a T-shirt line that is comfortable to run around in but still has you looking dressed, stylish and ready to run into anyone. We have a washable silk line from Italy that can go from the office to a night out. It’s comfortable beautiful and great for travel!
What are some of the things you’re looking for when choosing a brand or collection to carry in the store?
I look for quality, versatility and affordability. Today a lot of fashion is inexpensive but I do not think that our target clientele should be wearing the same things that kids are wearing. I believe that one can still be appropriate and fashionable however better quality merchandise looks better and lasts longer. I love to keep my eye on the trends but I think you can add in trendy accessories that coordinate with more classic pieces.
Are there certain items that are always in demand at Very Betty?
We have a great collection of gifts and accessories that will fit any budget. Our customers know they can come by and we will have something that works for them. At Very Betty we always want our customers leaving with a cutely wrapped gift. They can also go home with a new outfit for their night out.
What are some of your goals for the future of Very Betty?
We are launching a Facebook Shop and working on pop up shops. I would like to get into home decor. Having pretty and comfortable surroundings makes for a better quality of life. I love looking for unusual and fun furnishings.
What are some trends we can expect to see in Very Betty this Fall and Winter?
This fall there is a lot of embellished clothing and red tones. There will be some of that however I like to use accessories for embellishment that way clothing is more timeless.
Coffee. Can’t live without it. Even more, GOOD coffee, with a good story and great vibe, seems less easy to find anymore. I recently sat down for an interview with the owners of Honeylu’s in Prosper TX, which is an acclaimed coffee shop in town, to discuss what makes them unique and special.
This is my first interview for the “Around Town” series which will feature small businesses in Prosper, TX that I love!
Where does the name Honeylu’s come from?
The original concept stemmed from us honoring our first dachshund Speedy, so a dachshund in the logo only seemed appropriate. Once we started to think of names for our shop, we knew we wanted to be original and create our own word, something we would eventually be able to trademark and use in any market across the country. These ideas and worlds collided, we have another dachshund and her name is HoneyLu, and that is definitely a word that does not exist in any dictionary.
What inspired you to open a coffee shop?
After moving back to North Texas after 5 years in Seattle, we quickly realized we could not find a great cup of coffee anywhere. All the area had to offer were large chains serving over roasted burnt coffee with preservative laden syrups and microwaved pre-packaged food out of plastic bags.
What brought you to Prosper?
Family. Jens’ mom lives in Fairview and her brother and family live in McKinney. We lived in Stonebridge Ranch in McKinney from 2007-2010 and assumed we would land there this time around. But after the urging of our fabulous real estate agent and friend, we gave Prosper a try. We are so glad we did, because we love the small community feel of Prosper.
What is unique about your business (what sets you apart from the rest)?
Making an excellent cup of coffee is basically simple chemistry. It is the precise combination of the proper amount of beans, quality water, correct temperature, grind particle size, and amount of contact time with the coffee itself. By understanding these relationships, we are able to make minor adjustments to maximize the unique flavor profile of every coffee we bring into our shop. We weigh out every shot of espresso we pull, and every cup of coffee we brew. Our attention to these small little details is what sets us apart from everyone else in the area. We pride ourselves in providing an excellent customer experience, and we strive to make our specialty coffee and teas approachable. We also go out of our way to make sure all of our customers feel like family.
How did you choose the look of Honeylu’s?
We wanted the shop to feel warm and modern at the same time.We love the contrast of warm, rich woods with white countertops and white brick walls. We wanted to add pops of color and we feel we accomplished that through the Warhol style paintings of our dogs on the walls.
What kind of coffee do you use, and why did you choose it for Honeylu’s?
We use a mix of coffee from a few different roasters. We offer espresso and multiple single-origin coffees from both Geva and Oak Cliff. We will also have a guest roaster each month from other parts of the country to keep things fresh and give our customers the opportunity to see how different roasters can have completely different interpretations of how a particular coffee should taste.
What is your most popular drink?
Our most popular drinks are Nitro Cold Brew, Regular Cold Brew, Vanilla Latte, and Mocha Latte. Some of our out of the box drinks like our Lavender Latte and Sweet Potato Latte are also big sellers. We have also been told that our Chai is hands down the best they have ever had.
Does Honeylu’s offer food items? Allergy friendly items?
Yes, we offer both breakfast and lunch items in addition to our wide selection of pastries. In the mornings we make in house Bacon, Egg, and Cheese Croissants, Breakfast Burritos, and Crust-less Quiche. For lunch, we offer a rotating menu of Panini’s, Salads, and Wraps. Our biggest sellers are our London Broil and Havarti w Horseradish Aioli and Red Onion Jam. Our Tomato Basil Caprese, and our Kale Powerhouse Salad. We also make Gluten-Free muffins, scones, and quiche.
Should we look forward to any future events or additions in the shop?
Yes, starting in the fall we will be offering various coffee education classes centered around various brewing techniques, proper coffee to water ratio, and how to identify various flavor profiles.
Are there any plans for more Honeylu’s locations in the future?
Yes, we are hoping to open another three to four locations over the next five to seven years. Our future concepts will be hybrid cafe’s with both a drive thru and the traditional cafe’ setup that we currently use. We want our customers to be able to choose the type of experience they want so we can cater to the needs and wants of all of our customers.
Aside from running Honeylu’s, what are some personal hobbies or local activities that you enjoy?
We are very heavily involved in animal adoption causes. We donate a portion of our proceeds to local no-kill animal shelters, because we firmly believe that animals rescue us just as much as we rescue them. We enjoy being out in nature hiking around with our dogs while trying to capture as much natural beauty as we possibly can in any given day.
Additional Notes & Information
We are located in the Kroger Shopping Center at:
1170 N. Preston Rd. Ste. 130, Prosper TX 75078
We are open:
We are dog friendly on our patio out front and offer complimentary Wi-Fi for our customers.
THE STORY OF HONEYLU’S
The story of Honeylu’s Coffee is inspired by one of our first “fur children,” a Dachshund named Speedy for his whimsical and carefree attitude, and his love of running at “bullet speed.” Speedy burst into our lives during a time of great personal struggle and brought with him joy, vitality, and unconditional love – truly becoming the sunshine in our momentarily dreary world. Years later as Speedy became deaf and blind the addition of sister Honeylu helped to ease both his physical and our emotional pain. She became his eyes and ears; comforting and taking care of him in his time of need, very much the same way he had been there for us many years before.
In the course of our lives we have run into a multitude of people who shared a similar story of joy and excitement on how their “fur children” found them, and the positive impact they made in their lives. Story after story we saw a consistent narrative of unconditional love and loyalty from these noble canines, and learned of the life changing impact people received in becoming a “fur parent”.
When Speedy passed away, he left behind so many wonderful memories, and his memory continues to live on not only in our family, but here in this coffee shop. We wish to bring not only joy into the lives of those who come into our café, but embody the spirit of Speedy and deliver an exceptional product with urgency and efficiency. Moreover, because we know firsthand the positive impact animals have in our human lives, Honeylu’s Coffee is dedicated to donating a portion of the coffee sale proceeds to help animals in shelters find their forever homes.
The German philosopher Immanual Kant once said, “We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals.” Here at Honeylu’s Coffee we believe that our heart is best judged by the ways in which we aim to help animals in need while simultaneously delivering an exceptional product and the best possible customer service to our patrons. While you don’t need to be an animal lover to enjoy a cup of our excellent coffee, cold-pressed juice, or health-minded munchies, know that by being a part of this company you are making a positive impact not only in the lives of animals, but people as well. We are more than just great coffee, in fact, we embody the greatness in coffee by using coffee as a catalyst to affect change for a better tomorrow in the world.
“The world would be a nicer place if everyone had the ability to love as unconditionally as a dog.”
– M.K. Clinton
~ Philosophy & Culture~
Honeylu’s Coffee goal first and foremost is to create an environment where 3rd Wave Specialty Coffee is presented in an approachable manner to all who walk through the door. We aim never to ostracize or belittle those who may lack the culinary knowledge that we, and some our patrons, hold. Rather, the goal is to create an environment where all people (and pooches) are welcome to enjoy the highest culinary execution of coffee, cold-pressed juices, and a selection of health-minded munchies, and receive not only open arms when they walk through the door, but also speedy service so that they can enjoy our carefully crafted products conveniently and efficiently.
-Part one of a series of interviews between myself and other local names and entrepreneurs.